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Berget, 1909, Conquest of the Air, p. 6.:

The essential device for sustaining the balloon in the air is therefore the envelope, which we shall inflate with a light gas; it must further fulfil the conditions of lightness, strength, and impermeability.

Comment on history of balloon materials from Roth, 1917, The Free Balloon, p. 5, undoubtedly somewhat promotional of the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company aeronautics department:

The first balloons were made of paper, but naturally on account of their fragility and inflammability (as the first lifting power was hot air created by a fire) this was discarded for something better. However, this was the start and much credit is due the Montgolfier Brothers for their efforts. Shortly after this time hydrogen was used as a lifting power but on account of its lightness it was very difficult to build a light bag which did not leak. At last a substance known as gold beaters' skin was found and a balloon was built of it which was very satisfactory except for the cost. Gold beaters' skin is a thin membrane taken from the internal organs of the ox, one animal giving one piece about 6 inches square. However, considering the high cost of this material it is excellent and served its purpose well as it was almost perfectly gas tight and very light.
On account of the high cost and scarcity of this material it became necessary to look further for satisfactory balloon material. The next step was the varnished fabric. Both cotton and silk were varnished and used as balloon fabric with fair results. The product was much cheaper, fairly light as it was made of but a single ply of fabric but not nearly as impervious to hydrogen as gold beaters' skin, furthermore it became more porous every time it was folded as the varnish would crack causing the added expense of frequent re-varnishing. Another fault with this type of fabric was the fact that when it was wrapped up and stored away it was liable to catch fire due to spontaneous combustion, and on the whole it was only used in the absence of something better. At last the something better appeared and is almost universally used today.

Mac Sweeny, 1844, Essay on Aerial Navigation, p. 78:

Silk of close texture was in use for forming balloons, now the double Indian rubber cloth, known by the name of Mackintosh-cloth, is found to be well fitted for the purpose. The silk for forming this kind of cloth for balloons, should be strong. Mr. Green had bands woven in silk to prevent rents from extending. Mr. Green was the first, to cement silk together for balloons, by a flexible cement, a solution of Indian rubber in turpentine; for the seams, gum mastic was added to the solution; see the Patent Caoutchouc case in Mec. Mag. vol. 24.

Enclosing categories LTA
Subcategories Fabric
Keywords CPC B64B1/40, Texture
Start year
End year

This wiki has 186 patents in category "Balloons". Other techtypes related to Balloons: Aerial railway, Airship, CA 46/28, CH 129a, CPC B64B1/40, CPC B64D17/80, NL 62.2, USPC 244/32

Patents in category Balloons

Publications referring to Balloons